Environmental Sustainability: Who Cares?

A segmented landscape of engagement, challenges and opportunities

Ipsos | White paper | Consumers and Sustainability

As weather events increase in frequency and intensity across the world, we see a growing acknowledgement globally that the world is facing an environmental crisis.

Yet urgent day-to-day issues like managing the cost-of-living crisis often take precedence over important longer-term issues. What’s more, citizen attitudes, concerns, priorities and actions are not homogenous when it comes to environmental and social issues.

In this white paper, we share the results of a new global segmentation study, identifying five groups based on their levels of concern and engagement towards the environment. We also share guidance for government and businesses on how to connect with each segment and drive more positive behaviour change.

Five key takeaways: 

  • Globally, there is an increasing acknowledgement that we face an environmental crisis. However, urgent day-to-day issues are often higher priorities.
  • Citizen concerns, attitudes, priorities and actions are not homogenous when it comes to environmental and social issues.
  • Consumers can be split into five segments based on what they feel and how they act: Activists, Pragmatists, Conflicted Contributors, Busy Bystanders and Disengaged Denialists.
  • If we understand how different segments in different parts of the world feel and act, we can better educated and drive constructive behaviour change through relevant and respectful messaging.
  • To engage multiple segments, brands need to think about presenting sustainability as a co-benefit, not the primary benefit.

Table of content

  1. Five key takeaways
  2. The context
  3. The segmentation of sustainability
  4. Geo-diversity in environmental concern
  5. Shifting dimensions
  6. From understanding to activation


Consumer & Shopper